Techniques and Talking Points: For pastors and other church leaders regarding Israel and Palestine

Over the coming months, many of us will be in the position of interpreting the actions of the General Assembly in our congregations and with friends who are Presbyterian and from other faith traditions, and possibly with leaders from the Jewish and Muslim communities. Some of us will have the opportunity to craft letters to the editor or to make appearances on local radio or TV stations. We want to provide you with some background to help you prepare well to take advantage of those opportunities.

Presbyterian Church of Colombia Issues Peace Declaration

I urge you to read this important document from the Iglesia Presbiterina de Colombia carefully and prayerfully. It has much to offer us as we continue the process post-General Assembly in our church of being stewards of peace and repairers of relationship.

Risking Peace in a Violent World: Affirmations for Presbytery Consideration

As the next stage in a six-year process of discernment, the 221st General Assembly (2014) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) directs the Stated Clerk to send to each presbytery, electronically and in print, the following five affirmations and supporting rationale with the request that they discuss and take an advisory vote on each affirmation and send the results of those votes, along with a summary of the floor discussion, back to the Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy by July 1, 2015, to help guide the preparation of a report on peacemaking directions for the 222nd General Assembly (2016).

Presbyterian Church General Assembly Approves Divestment from Caterpillar, Hewlett-Packard and Motorola Solutions for Business Supporting Israel's Occupation of Palestine

After a great deal of prayer, debate, and thoughtful deliberation, the 221st General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) voted today to divest itself of its stock in three companies whose business supports or profits from the State of Israel's Occupation of Palestine. Young Adult Advisory Delegates voted 65% in favor of the motion, Theological Advisory Delegate over 90%, and Ecumenical and Mission Advisory Delegates 100% in favor of the motion. The Commissioners' vote was much closer, affirming the proposal to divest 51% to 49%.

We Refuse to Be Enemies

We are deeply concerned about the Open Letter sent to General Assembly Commissioners by John Buchanan and twenty-eight of his colleagues on Friday, June 13. We consider the signers of this letter our friends. Together, we have been allies and colleagues in our shared work of reclaiming a vibrant church. However, we disagree sharply with their critique of the recommendation that the Presbyterian Church (USA) divest from three corporations whose businesses support or benefit from the State of Israel’s occupation of Palestine.

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